Volunteering is something that has amazing benefits for everyone involved. For people young and old, volunteering is a way for them to give back to their community. It’s a way to do good for others. While many of those who volunteer are older, volunteering offers a variety of benefits to those who are young as well.
At DREAM, we offer many volunteering opportunities in the Omaha community throughout the entire year. We have seen the impact that volunteering has on both the organizations involved and the volunteers themselves. Below, we explain some the benefits that youth gain from volunteering.
1. Volunteering teaches valuable life skills
First and foremost, volunteering teaches children valuable life skills, such as working with others and following directions. It gives kids a chance to get outside of the classroom and put their knowledge into real-life work.
Consider this: collecting food for a local shelter could be a chance for your child to learn how to organize materials by type, expiration date or brand name. Cleaning up garbage in a park can show them the value of working as a team and how to efficiently come together to get an important job done. Whether it’s working with animals, a local shelter or a national cause, volunteering gives your child the chance to learn important life lessons in a safe environment.
2. Volunteering encourages empathy
Working with others also gives children the chance to develop their empathy, selflessness and compassion. Oftentimes, kids grow up in a specific world and aren’t exposed to much else. Volunteering, however, gives children the chance to meet and interact with others who are different—and oftentimes less fortunate—than themselves.
Through volunteering opportunities, kids have the chance to see the world from a different lens and recognize their own circumstantial privileges. What better way for children to learn empathy than to experience it firsthand?
3. Volunteering promotes youth to explore different interests
Another benefit of having young children and teens volunteer is that it allows them to go out and discover different interests. When having your children volunteer, it’s a great idea to give them the opportunity to choose an activity or organization that interests them. By doing something new, children can gain new passion, as well as a new perspective on things.
4. Volunteering builds long-lasting generosity
Lastly, by volunteering starting at a young age, children often live a life filled with generosity. People who volunteer are more likely to volunteer later in life, as well as get involved and donate to nonprofit organizations. Generosity is something that many people today lack, and developing this at a young age is a great thing.
As we progress through 2022, it’s a great idea to consider getting your children involved with volunteering. Whether you volunteer with DREAM, or another organization in Omaha, you and your children can start making a difference today.